Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Aligning the Pieces, easy as Pie.

I Thought I would share with you a tip for lining up your pieces after you have them all cut out. 
As we get braver with our cutting machines we like to push the boundaries with our designs. maybe using a few different colors within the same intricate design. How do we realign the design without placing and replacing each layer over and over again? Every time we reposition our vinyl it loses some of its sticking power.
 If a design is busy we can get distracted by too many pieces, making it difficult to line up correctly. Pie is my favorite answer to most problems. For this demonstration, I have used this cute little lion I picked up in the design store. It is a simple design to show you the process.

 I layered the lion pieces up and filled in the sections with the different color I wanted to use. As this is an ordinary cut file all the pieces would cut out separately, so if I were to leave the image like this I would end up with a lot of cuts in places I don't want them. To turn it into the pieces I need I use the modify tool. by selecting overlapping sections and clicking subtract all (Hold down Shift to select more than one piece at a time).This tool removes all the bits of the design that are hidden from view and are not needed.

After the process is complete the pieces can be separated as shown in the image on the right you can separate them to check you have the correct pieces and simple use the undo button to put them all back together again.


Next, I create my alinement wheel my "pie". From the store I have purchased a file called "Pie Charts" this file has a number of different pie charts with different numbers of slices. Which pie you use will depend on how many colors you have in your design. I recommend that you use two slices of pie for the main color of your design, it will make lining up the subsequent slices easier.



 After Purchasing the pie design open it from your Libary to the mat and delete the "pies" you won't be using. For my design, I used the 6 section pie and colored the pie pieces to match the colors in my image. If you can't remember which color you used, select a piece of pie then select the dropper tool and click on one of the colors on you image this will change the color to match for you.


Your image is now ready to cut. Click the Send button in the top right of the software. For media, I selected glossy vinyl and clicked next this brought me to the action window.  within the action, section select the "Fill" tab. All of the boxes will have a tick in them, as we are cutting each color separately we will click on each tick to turn off the cut function. One by one click on a box to activate the cut function on each color and load the matching color into your machine. you will see that when you select the color of different pieces of your design the matching piece of pie will also cut out. Send each color cut job to the machine until you have cut all your pieces.

When you have cut your pieces remove the unwanted areas of vinyl from the backing sheet leaving only the pieces of your design and the piece of pie 

Apply a piece of transfer tape over the main section of your design and rub over to ensure good contact. peel back the corner of the backing paper beneath the "pie". Align the section of Pie on the next section of the design. when you are happy with the position, peel back the backing from the first sheet and allow the two pieces to come together  Be careful not to allow the "Pie-corner" to move
repeat this process until you have all the sections of your design placed back together. All is left to do now is apply your decal in the desired location or if you sending it to a friend leave the last layer of backing on and the transfer tape so they can easily apply it themselves.

This one is going in the post!






Designs Used

animal set

by Rivka Wilkins

Design ID #5353
Published: 11/27/2009

pie charts

Design ID #26383
Published: 4/24/2012

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Monday, 29 May 2017

Using Scraps in your Projects




Hello Janet here with, what is essentially, an illustrated list of hints and tips for using up scraps, or making your favourite bits of media go further.  I made this cute little Mouse Ice Cream Cart by Samantha Walker to illustrate some of the ideas. I won't be showing you how to put it together, however, as the designer has already put together a great tutorial for you.

Hints for using up scraps with the Silhouette using Adhesive Cork and making a 3D mouse ice cream cart . Janet Packer for Silhouette UK Blog

Instructions and Tutorials

That leads in to my first tip. The designer often times puts a link to a tutorial in the  File Properties tab in the Library. If you're wondering how to how to access File Properties, take a look at my previous post, Previewing Files in Silhouette Software. Failing that, pop back to the Silhouette Design Store and see if there is one linked in the item's description.


Hints for using up scraps with the Silhouette using Adhesive Cork and making a 3D mouse ice cream cart . Janet Packer for Silhouette UK Blog


Don't Have the Correct Colour?

I have four suggestions for you here:

1. Print your own background paper or colour your own background pattern

Hints for using up scraps with the Silhouette  . Janet Packer for Silhouette UK Blog


2. Make a Print and Cut with the piece cut from the colour you need. The pieces in this Floral Valentine Tag card were cut from pink when I had none left in my stash.

Hints for using up scraps with the Silhouette  . Janet Packer for Silhouette UK Blog


3. Cut and Colour it. I often cut pieces from white (or in this case silver glitter paper) and hand colour them with markers. All the pink glitter on this card is silver, coloured with a Copic marker.


Hints for using up scraps with the Silhouette  . Janet Packer for Silhouette UK Blog


Here's where I coloured an entire project of Unicorn Bracelets with permanent markers in place of rainbow glitter htv.

Hints for using up scraps with the Silhouette  . Janet Packer for Silhouette UK Blog


4.  Alter the colour. I needed a lighter shade of pink for the ice creams and ears, so instead of using different shade of pink from that used for the canopy, I used a light pink pigment ink on the pieces once they were cut.

Hints for using up scraps with the Silhouette using Adhesive Cork and making a 3D mouse ice cream cart . Janet Packer for Silhouette UK Blog




Hints for using up scraps with the Silhouette using Adhesive Cork and making a 3D mouse ice cream cart . Janet Packer for Silhouette UK Blog



Only a Tiny Piece Left?

In order to make the little chalk board sign on the cart I was able to utilise a scrap that I had left over from a previous project. In this case it was possible because I had my original cut file saved and was able to arrange the pieces close to the original cut.

Hints for using up scraps with the Silhouette  . Janet Packer for Silhouette UK Blog


Hints for using up scraps with the Silhouette  . Janet Packer for Silhouette UK Blog



Hints for using up scraps with the Silhouette using Adhesive Cork and making a 3D mouse ice cream cart . Janet Packer for Silhouette UK Blog




If I hadn't the file, I could have scanned or photographed the pieces and utilised my PixScan™mat to ensure they were cut in exactly the correct place. Hilary wrote an excellent tutorial on  Precision Cutting of Patterned Paper. The exact same technique can be applied to scraps of paper.


I hope this has given you some ideas for using up your bits and pieces. If you have tips of your own I'd love to hear about them in the comments. Do share!



Bye for now,


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Sunday, 28 May 2017

Repeating Star Borders



Hey there, Niki here today with how to make a repeating star border. I started off by opening a design from the Design Store 'Star Border'.

I then copy and pasted the design so that I had two. I placed them next to each other, overlapping slightly and then I welded the two shapes together so I had one long piece.

I resized the border so that it was just under 12" wide. I then copied and pasted the border so that I had two. The second one I flipped by going to Object, Mirror, Flip horizontally. This mirror images my second border.

I then copied the first border again and pasted so I had three borders altogether. I then cut these from an ombre sheet of paper so I had three borders in the same colour but different shades.

Here is the layout I made with the star borders


I love the repeating border shapes in the Design Store, there's a few different ones and they are easy to create long borders with.

Thanks for stopping by and happy scrapping xx 

find me on Instagram: @Nikiclaire
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